The Dark and Hollow Places by Carrie Ryan

Tuesday April 5, 2011

The Dark and Hollow Places
by Carrie Ryan
March 22, 2011
Delacorte Press
Goodreads summary: There are many things that Annah would like to forget: the look on her sister's face before Annah left her behind in the Forest of Hands and Teeth, her first glimpse of the Horde as they swarmed the Dark City, the sear of the barbed wire that would scar her for life. But most of all, Annah would like to forget the morning Elias left her for the Recruiters.  

Annah's world stopped that day, and she's been waiting for Elias to come home ever since. Somehow, without him, her life doesn't feel much different than the dead that roam the wasted city around her. Until she meets Catcher, and everything feels alive again. 

But Catcher has his own secrets. Dark, terrifying truths that link him to a past Annah has longed to forget, and to a future too deadly to consider. And now it's up to Annah: can she continue to live in a world covered in the blood of the living? Or is death the only escape from the Return's destruction?

Pontifications...The Forest of Hands and Teeth is one of my very favorite books and I'm really sad to see this series end...but the finale in the series, The Dark and Hollow Places, ends without a feeling of certain finality so I'm going to secretly hope and wish there will be more stories about Mary, Abigail, Annah, Catcher and Elias! 

In the second book, The Dead Tossed Waves, the narrator is Gabry (who is really Abigail we find out later) and she lives with her mother Mary who is the narrator in book one. Now, in book three the narrator is Annah, Gabry's (Abigail) twin sister. Okay, got it? Annah is on her own in Dark City after Elias left her to join the Recruiters. Annah has not seen her sister since that fateful day in the woods and so much has happened since then...when she sees Gabry and Catcher one day while trying to leave Dark City, Annah's whole life changes.

I know it sounds complicated but the story flows nicely and you could even read this book as a stand-alone but to get the full impact of the story you should, of course, read all three! The story is dark and at times violent with glimpses of hope here and there as Annah dreams of leaving Dark City and The Horde behind. With Catcher's help and her sister and Elias by her side, it just might happen.

Like I stated before, I hate to see this series end! I look forward to other books by Carrie Ryan and this is a series I highly recommend. When telling students about this book I know that it will be appreciated by guys and girls alike!

Some violent situations make this book appropriate for ages 14 and up.